Monday, June 29, 2009

Army Sgt. Juan C. Baldeosingh

Remember Our Heroes

Army Sgt. Juan C. Baldeosingh, 30, of Newport, N.C.

Sgt. Baldeosingh was assigned to the 120th Combined Arms Battalion, North Carolina National Guard, Wilmington, N.C.; died from wounds sustained when an improvised explosive device detonated near his vehicle June 29, 2009 in Baghdad. Also killed were Sgt. 1st Class Edward C. Kramer, Sgt. Roger L. Adams Jr. and Spc. Robert L. Bittiker.

Newsday -- To those who knew him, Sgt. Juan Carlos Baldeosingh was both carefree and dutiful, a fun-loving joker who found military service so fulfilling that he enlisted twice.

Baldeosingh, a National Guardsman who grew up in Hempstead, was among the last four soldiers killed in Baghdad on Monday, just before the U.S. pullback this week in Iraq.

He was scheduled for a two-week leave next week.

"We thought he was coming back," his half-sister Dianna Baldeosingh, 28, said tearfully Thursday at a relative's East Meadow home.

A former Marine, Baldeo-singh, 30, was a U.S. Army National Guardsman serving with the Multi-Nation Division Baghdad when he was killed. His family said the Humvee he was in was hit by an improvised explosive device.

He was on temporary leave from Carteret General Hospital in Morehead City, N.C., where hospital officials said he served as director of the risk management and safety department. 

He enlisted in the Marines right after high school and served as an infantryman from 1997 to 2004, including a tour in Afghanistan in 2003-04. He moved to North Carolina several years ago and had recently moved his mother from Long Island so she could be closer, his family said. 

Baldeosingh enlisted last year in the National Guard. "He was proud of putting on the uniform," said his younger half-sister, Jennyfer Baldeosingh, 26, of East Meadow.

She said her brother called his mother nightly - and last talked to her on Sunday night, saying he had to go into Baghdad the next day.

"He knew he was going into hostile territory," Jennyfer Baldeosingh said.

 He also leaves behind his wife, Rebecca, and three young daughters - Emily, 2, and 5-year-old twins, Isabella and Kylie.

"I'm very devastated. . . . I had bought the materials to make his welcome home sign for when we picked him up from the Raleigh airport," Rebecca Baldeosingh said by phone from their home in Havelock, N.C.

Baldeosingh was a graduate of Holy Trinity High School in Hicksville, where the school Web site had a death notice.

A message posted with the notice read: "With sadness and gratitude, the Holy Trinity Community prays for Juan, his family, and all of our brave servicemen and women."

A ceremony will be held in North Carolina with burial to follow, though details were not finalized yesterday.

Army Sgt. Juan C. Baldeosingh was killed in action on 6/29/09.

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